The dishonorably discharged Afghanistan veteran Thomas returns to his home village of Jerichow. Ali, a local Turkish-German businessman, owner of a snack-bar chain, hires him as a driver. ... See full summary »
God and Satan are on a train discussing the fate of three individuals. The stories of the people in question are told in a trio of very strange vignettes. One involves an insane anylum with... See full summary »
A hundred and fourteen famous Iranian theater and cinema actresses and a French star: mute spectators at a theatrical representation of Khosrow and Shirin, a Persian poem from the twelfth ... See full summary »
The July 3rd, 1973 historic concert of the 'leper Messiah'. This was to be David Bowie's last concert with the the Ziggy persona and the Spiders from Mars. A great medley of 'Wild Eyed Boy ... See full summary »
This seemingly casual film set in Montreal in 1965 keeps us fixated on the character in the film, namely Leonard Cohen, a poet who came of age in the 1960's. A Donald Brittain documentary, it gives us a glimpse of Cohen going about his daily routine of rising from bed, reading before loving audiences, going to restaurants and bars, and even getting his hair done at a beauty salon. We see him on a broadcast show trading barbs with Pierre Berton and telling the viewers the importance of being in a state of grace. Interesting how this Jewish young man has an affection for Catholic metaphor,which he interprets in his own fashion but which he can explain in terms that make perfect sense.
The camera is his friend. He looks good on camera and is relaxed and articulate. He looks like a sixties preppy with the fine-tailored look and the well-coiffed hair. He even jokes about ads in the paper for hair removal. The camera zooms in on him when he speaks. In this film, we see a series of portraits of the poet on film. We are treated to background scenes from his home town of Montreal...as he rises and looks out the window at the snow falling, or talks about Mount Royal where he played as a child. The winter background in Montreal is appropriate since Montreal is a city known for winter. It used to be the most Catholic winter city in the world, although hockey might have been the more dominant religion. He talks about hockey and how in public school, he was the ninth best defenceman in his class.
He sees himself as a social critic and yet he comes from a well-heeled family and grew up in the once insular English enclave of Westmount in this predominantly French-Catholic city. This is not a pro-Cohen film but true to his talent for great documentary, Donald Brittain has delivered a film that could be of interest to all shades of opinion on Leonard Cohen.
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